Gaines•Burgers introduces Murray the Pointer

Gaines•Burgers with Murray the Pointer 1986

Gaines•Burgers introduces a special breed

"It's me. Murray, the Pointer. And all you have to do is use the order form on this page and I'll come and live with you. But if I do, ya' gotta remember to give me Gaines-burgers every once in a while. 'Cause, ya' know I get tired of eating the same dry stuff all the time. So 2 or 3 times a week, ya' gotta give me something special... ya' gotta give me beefy Gaines-burgers... OK? I mean, hey, I may be a special breed, but when it comes to Gaines-burgers, I'm no different from your dog."

I read Murray's words over and over, and would imagine it was Murray talking, and I liked talking Dogs, so that was a cool thing! Our local newspaper, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, came with ad inserts on Sunday, and I'd look through them every week to find great Dog pictures to save in my poochie scrap books. Most of the pictures were ads for Dog food, and there were many, it seemed like there was a big competition in pet food at the time. Other ads were for things like calendars and collector's plates with different Dog breeds on them.

I remember when I found Murray, I was sitting in my dad's old green recliner in the living room, going through the newspaper and the ads in the afternoon, and turned the page to Murray and went wow.. It was a shock to see this picture so suddenly, and I had to refocus and figure out what was going on here! I had liked Dog costumes for a long time, and would watch for them as mascots on TV and characters in kid's shows, but I'd never seen Dog face makeup with a costume that was this good before. Most were like Bob Dog from Mr. Rogers, a baggy costume with the actor's face sticking through the front of it, but Murray's face was part of his costume. I sat there looking at the picture for a while, thinking about what it meant, and then spirited it away to one of my Dog picture folders, to protect it and keep it in the best condition I possibly could.

Small ads from from the following weeks

2 inch pictures from ads that ran later. I like the fact that Murray is a Pointer, and he's pointing at the Gaines Burgers! (click for bigger)

murray-pointing-dark-small murray-pointing-light-small
I included both of the ones I have since the quality is different, and since this is all of the Murray stuff I have.

You might wonder why they didn't give Murray a full masked face. I think it was to show his expressions, and if you cover his face, it would be harder for him to relate to the audience like he was your Dog talking to you, telling you to buy Gaines Burgers.

I also remember that Murray had a TV ad, where he stood like in the picture and talked about his favorite food. I saw the full commercial one time on mom's TV. Murray had a sort of cartoony Dog voice, more happy than the growly Dog voice that some Dog characters use. There was also a Gaines Burgers ad with a girl Dog! I only saw it for maybe ten seconds, but as I recall, she was more of a shaggy Dog, and I don't remember her voice. I'd love to see those ads again.

I wonder how well Murray's ad campaign worked, since I didn't hear much about Murray, or the food itself after this. I couldn't find any other references to Murray at all, and that's why on the 30th anniversary year of this ad I've decided to put it up and show you. Anyone else remember Murray, write and let me know! Aside for the pictures and TV ads, was Murray anywhere else, like on special boxes of Gaines Burgers, or did he go on a promotional tour?

One thing I liked about Dog food ads from the 1970s is how some of them featured scruffy, shaggy breeds, small to medium size, mongrel looking, mutts like Benji and Here's Boomer. (click pictures for bigger)

gaines-burgers-box-small gaines-burgers-charlie-small gaines-burgers-fetch-small gaines-burgers-liver-small gaines-burgers-nourishing-small gaines-burgers-soft-moist-small

Gaines Top Choice, is it a premium version of Gaines Burgers?


Not many Dogs may remember Murray the Pointer, but this page is a tribute to a cool Dog character. Happy 30th anniversary, Murray!